In their toughest task this year, Dublin’s Minor Footballers will need to dig deep and pull out all the stops if they want to get past Derry this weekend and advance to face Kerry in this year’s All Ireland Minor Football Final.

Dublin had a relatively easy Leinster campaign, but were pushed hard in the semis by Kildare. And despite the scoreline of 2-19 to 0-12 in the final, they gave Louth a lot of room in the second half of the proceedings, but luckily had done enough in the first 30 minutes to allow for that.

Back at the beginning of the month the Dubs found their form again and beat Clare in the All Ireland Quarter finals to set up Sunday’s clash with the men from the North.

“They like to play a very open and expansive style of football” Gray said of this weekend’s opponents to “and that has been shown in all their games this year.”

“You could see in the Ulster final how much they enjoyed the open spaces of Clones as they scored 1-22 in that game, with the bulk of those scores from play, so there’s no reason why Croke Park shouldn’t suit them next Sunday.”

Derry clinched victory in the Ulster Quarter final by a single point beating a very fancied Tyrone side 0-18 to 1-14. from their they made light work of Antrim in the semi final amassing a huge 3-17 to 0-09 win.

In the Ulster Final they lead Cavan at the break by 0-14 to 1-7. And despite Cavan finding the net again early in the second half they kicked on to regain control and went on to win their second provincial title in three years.

“They played some very good football against both Antrim and Cavan after that and have put up some very big scores.”

But as always Gray is concentrating on Dublin’s game and trying to keep distraction away ahead of Sunday’s clash.

“We have had a very good response in training since the Clare match and they have shown throughout the year that they can deal with playing in front of big crowds so Croke Park shouldn’t hold any issues for them at the weekend.

“We are optimistic that if we can play to our potential, then we will get the right result on Sunday.”